THE SUN INN, NEWTONGRANGE
This former mining stronghold – the remains of which, The Scottish Mining Museum, is five minutes away – is an unlikely setting for a boutique hotel and restaurant.
I knew this as a quirky and somewhat dull pub that did food. What a transformation. It has been refurbished mainly as a casual place to eat; intimate, personal and deserving of the “boutique” tag.
None are generous, and the suite is really only a room with a corridor and dressing room. Its deep copper bath really is special, however, and extraordinarily comfortable for two to sit in for hours. Fine mattresses and bed linen make for a great night’s sleep. The rooms at the front could suffer from traffic noise. Striking modern décor, with lots of warm, solid oak.
We stayed on a Tuesday and the restaurant/bistro was full and buzzing. Breakfasts are generous and the lunch and dinner menus are varied and imaginative; Scottish produce is promoted minus the tartanry. Everything was beautifully cooked and presented and the service was perfect.
The fact there was no need to head into Edinburgh for a good meal, which would have been the case previously in this locale; very comfortable covered outside bar, again a rarity in this part of the world.
NOT SO KEEN
The décor of some rooms, given their size, is a bit heavy going, making them feel a little cramped. There were some teething problems with the plumbing.